W42ST Daily 6/12/2020

Political statement. Fashion statement. The masks we wear say a lot about us. And, as they increasingly become a fixture of our post-COVID present and indefinite future, we’re starting to get even more creative.

Meet this designer, who is developing masks with zippers (great for those sidewalk to-go drinks). 

These geniuses are developing a clear mask – one that will humanize medical staff and enable the rest of us to remember what a smile looks like. (And has everyone forgotten about people who require lip-reading to communicate?)

Four weeks on, I’m still waiting for my order of this clever piece of kit. 3D printed, medical-grade filtration, with a kind of frame, the theory goes that the high-tech fabric is lifted off the face, allowing the wearer to breathe more easily. Summer is going to be a bitch without it.

Tyler Wallach, who illustrated our Pride 2017 cover, has transferred his Keith Haring-style art to face masks (and donated supplies to essential workers plus high-risk patients and staff at The Queens Center for Gay Seniors). 

And Shareef Hadid Jenkins – Hell’s Kitchen resident and owner of the gender-free fashion line BoiPKG – has designed face coverings with sexy cowboys, rainbow flags, and African prints. He’s also been passing out KN95 masks to Black Lives Matter protesters, to ensure everyone stays safe while fighting for justice. “Many of the donations for that came from neighbors here in HK,” he says, “for which I’m eternally grateful.”

Shareef has joined the esteemed judging panel of drag queens, designers, and fashionistas of our #maskie competition, which closes on Monday. Here’s what to do. Post a selfie wearing a mask on Instagram or Twitter. Make it creative. Use the hashtag #W42ST. And the judges will choose the winner. The prize? Glory, honor, and a goodie bag that includes a Paige Turner T-shirt, W42ST tote bag, my favorite Rude Red hot sauce, and a wardrobe of masks from Maison 10Suzanne Vinnik, and BoiPKG.

Vasthy Mompoint has been angry. She’s been sad too. The actor, who has performed in Broadway shows including The SpongeBob Musical and The Prom, knows only too well the inherent racism that exists within the theater industry. And the last few weeks have brought that painfully to the surface.

But she has a plan. Her mission: to create vibrant, joyful children’s programming – in the mold of Mr Rodgers and Lavar Burton (there has never been an American black, female children’s TV host) – through the Broadway Babysitters Playhouse. This is her story of healing through happiness.

We’re a whisper away from 10,000 followers on Instagram. If you don’t already follow us – um, WHY NOT? Remedy that immediately by following us here, and telling your friends to do the same. Yay!

The Sheen Center celebrates the work of Stephen Sondheim this afternoon with a live performance of his songs and discussion of the lyrics of ‘Finishing The Hat’ from Sunday in the Park with George. Stream it here.

HIIT training mixes with African dance moves in a workout with dancer, choreographer, activist, healer, and personal trainer Johari Mayfield, every Friday at 4pm. Suggested price is $10 but pay what you can. Work your body here.

Last Friday these incredible humans raised $94,763 for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Blown. Away. And if that isn’t cause to dance, I’m not sure what is. Join them tonight. The theme: Let It Glow. Get down and boogie here.

Bobby Pins and Kirby Grips host The Happy House, with performances, seriously special prizes, and a celebration of all that is joyous. Get all the info here.

Actress and comedian Julie Halston presents a half-hour “gab-fest” every Friday at 5pm, with Broadway guests from Michael Urie to Mario Catone. Tune in here.

There’s a delicious package of original art up for grabs, thanks to our friends at n0thing editions. The giveaway ends tonight. All the info is here.

All Arts is streaming the powerful Maya Angelou documentary And Still I Rise. See it here.

No cover. No drink minimum. The KO virtual comedy club is coming to a laptop near you tonight. Get tickled here.

Our friends at Ensemble Studio Theatre and MCC Theater are taking part in the #OpenYourLobby initiative. So if you’re protesting this weekend and need a place to shelter, use a restroom or wifi, or get a snack and some water, they’ll be open tonight, tomorrow, and Sunday, 12pm-7pm. Find out about all the other theaters that are participating here.

Join a free, early morning virtual workout, with special guest Sabrina Vega from the US national gymnastic team. Sign up here.

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